James / School Supplies


Daniel writes: 

This picture is of James. He is working as a machinga (street vendor.) He got his capital from his Uncle and started this business long ago. The business of selling books is very important during the beginning of the school year. Many schools open on Monday (January 8) and many students need exercise books, pencil, pen. This is a good month to sell things for school. He is trying to get more capital so can  expand and get a shop of his own. In other times of the year he sells clothes, mirrors, combs, handkerchiefs, dolls, watches and other commodities. 

The equator passes through Tanzania, but most of the country is in the southern hemisphere so our winter is their summer. For primary and secondary school, the new year beings in January. (For college, they follow the European model of school years starting in September.) 

In many of his interviews people share with Daniel 1) what they do, 2) where they got a little bit of money to get going, and 3) what they hope to do as soon as they can get a little more. In this economy, getting a job often requires starting a small business.